Ah, the Blackhawks Convention! That wonderful time of the year when Rocky Wirtz notices that he hasn’t received a dumptruck full of money from Hawks fans in, like, months and yells at McDonough to do something about it.

Love it, Loathe it or just find it mildly amusing to watch Q&As degenerate into bickering, rude questions and autograph requests, it remains a firm part of the Blackhawks calendar. What you may not have realised is that our neighbours in Missouri have their own equivalent.

It’s on a much smaller scale, more poorly attended, a lot more pointless and plainly saddled with a crippling inferiority complex, so is therefore completely bound up in St Louis’ very identity.

This year has seen a change of venue, from a vacant lot behind a cheque-cashing store, to a luxury hotel. This has clearly been done in a bid to attract the attention of the Hockey World to this celebration of everything Blues Hockey. They even sent out invites to the Media, one of which made its way to us here at Cheer The Anthem

Looks like the Blues’ media department have upped their presentation skills. I sense new crayons.


Then, of course, there’s the venue. Despite the charm of the traditional “Trash-Fire Cookout” and occasional surprise contributions to the Q&A from the Wandering Insane at the old Lot, it was felt that the cream of the Hockey Press would demand more. Like a roof. Maybe some walls. Fewer rats.  That sort of pampering.

Therefore, after a long search, a perfect venue has been found for this year.

Of course, another bonus for visitors to the Hotel is its handy location within the airport, therefore ensuring that on no account does anyone have to actually venture into St Louis.

The actual program of events has been kept as secret in St Louis Blues circles as Ken Hitchcock’s daily Calorie intake (for fear of causing food riots) or Ryan Reaves’ actual IQ (for fear the State will have him neutered). However, we were able to come by a copy when it got stuck to our shoe in a public restroom stall.

Certainly looks like a full-on schedule!

programme of events

If there is one lasting impression to be taken away from this whole event, it is that the Blues are planing on following up a disappointing 2012/13 Season with a campaign in 2013/14 that will be pursued with all the professionalism, skill and quiet perseverance that we have come to expect.

Is it October yet?